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Please ideas for Stopping Medication

I need any of your ideas which I am sure there are plenty
of posts on this subject but right now I just need some help please
on getting off Oxycotine and Endocet which I have taken in different
dozes and with other medications for 6 years.
Due to the fact that my pain level has got to the point that the current
medications I have taken for along time are not helping and I have
built up a Tolerance my pain is not being controlled.
I am fed up with Doctor's who want to try other types of medications
that I have suggested and have had reactions to like my Oxygen level
dropping to 70's and won't work with me to find a combination of others,
I have made a decision to be dropped off at our son's cabin where
there no phones and stay there until I am clean of it all.
Please if you have ever done this how long does it take and what ideas
would you give me please.
Thanks Sherrri


  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,842
    there is no easy way.
    BUT oxygen level at 70! That is way beyond dangerous levels You should be at 90 or better.
    That is real bad

    Those that have cut back on their medications... DRINK WATER, WATER, WATER, WATER and then MORE WATER
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Hope3HHope3 Posts: 751
    edited 03/31/2015 - 1:28 PM
    Thanks Ron
    Yeah I know it is but at this point I am fed up with the medications
    and the fact even though they were aware of the past risks with
    the medications they were willing to try them again, instead of taking
    the time to figure something else out. Besides the fact
    that I have never broken any rules, but I am not going into that.
    I posted in another post that the last Doctor said he does not believe
    changing meds or different combinations make a difference was
    the final straw.
    I at this point have no other choice enough so anyway water for sure.
    I use a C-Pap machine that 70's is low and I check it at night (always above 90
    and I have that oxygen check every year) freaked me out.
    Quit that Gabapetin immediately notified the Doctor he was upset but he
    knew about my previous experience with this medication. I know I could
    have refused but when you get to a certain level of pain you get desperate.
    Sorry too much rant.
    Thanks for the reply
  • That had to have been a very hard decision to reach....but it might be the best for you. OnlyYOU know what's best for you. If you plan on going through the withdrawl by yourself, please take a few things with you like Imodium and some sort of sleep aid like melatonin (or which ever you are comfortable with).

    You WILL have some bowel issues as well as insomnia as a result of stopping the medications. Both of those can really add to the discomfort of withdrawl so better to have something in your "arsenal" to help you along.

    As I said, good luck to you. You are much stronger than I, taking this on willfully. I wish you a speedy "recovery".

    Herniated discs, L4 &L5, L5 & S1
    Spinal stenosis, L4 & L5
  • No I am not stronger than you, in fact I consider myself weak when
    I read what others on here deal with. The thing is I react for some dang
    reason to so many medications (not narcotic) and that eliminates a lot of the
    opportunities to have those options. This decision comes because
    I have been at a level of 7/8 for too long and I know the pain
    chart and it was my GP that does my Medication who set that level.
    I have tried to figure out why he feels like this is the limit.
    Right now I finally got a Doctor to listen to me that I
    could have a SI joint issue and got an injection which helped until
    today but so happy that means maybe I am there. So now therapy
    starts next week but do I think I can do therapy at this level not
    so sure. So I have weighted the pros's and con's and there is no
    other choice since my Doctor's for whatever reason won't even
    discuss a change in my meds. I have no history over 12 years of
    ever going outside the guidelines, so it is what it is.
    My son's cabin is on a river and to me the perfect place to turn into
    a -------- don't want to put this on them.
    Sorry got ranting pain has made me strange to say the least.
    But thanks so much for your kindness and ideas, I will add them
    to my list.
  • brandysue50bbrandysue50 Baldwinsville NYPosts: 46
    Try cold turkey or ask your dr for valium. My dr at Spine Wellness made me stop my oxycodone after 3 years. A week later of not being on it, they gave me valium.
  • It took two miserable weeks, but I did it. My doctor gave me some medication for nausea and a one time persriptionfor anti anxiety and muscle aches (soma). Even with that, iI was very sick but it was worth it. I was only on the narcotics for about 12 weeks. Pain is tolerable and brain is clear. Exercises, swimming, ice packs, and OTC pain relievers do the trick . Good luck!
  • You can do this! My mother died at 55 because of her addiction to these medications. They can be very dangerous and she was my motivation to get off them asap. She kept needing more and stronger stuff. It was awful to see her health and personality disintegrate. You'll be better in no time.
  • Thanks so much for your wise in-put, plus encouragement and I will take it to heart.
    My problem is that I have taken pain medications and others
    for going on 15 or more years and my tolerance has got to the point
    that the narcotics help but not enough. I still remain at a 8/9 and my
    Doctor set that level for my pain not me. I never have a break it has
    sucked my life away and in trying so many combinations and not
    being able to find a Doctor who will set up a combination that works
    I made this decision. I want my life back and I know I will need pain
    medications for the rest of my life unless there is some cure I am not
    aware of, I use all the blend and more.
    I have documentation from the Doctor who took care of my meds for
    16 years that I never showed one sign of being addicted but yes
    my body has grown to the point enough is enough. It scares the hell
    out of me that I might need to have surgery which with no increase
    in meds for my bladder surgery that was one cruel eye opener.
    I too have watched drugs destroy my family and several friends so
    that is another thing that plays a huge role in this decision. I am so
    sorry you lost your Mom to that, it does not matter how old you
    are it is such a loss.
    I read it takes a month to completely clear your mind and body it will
    be hell and I think you and others who have done it are so brave.
    What do we do, if you read and look at the way meds are going we
    will be cut alot and there will be so many more problems in getting the
    treatment we need and deserve.
    I am a huge believer that the less you can take the better off you are
    but there reaches a point when they are a critical part of pain control
    as you all know.
    I wish you all the very best Easter and I am in that frame of mind you
    know where you cannot think so forgive if this ranting.
    Thanks and take care
    I am so grateful for each of you and this Forum it has been a life saver.
  • I have done this when I moved and had to wait to get into a new doc to get my pail meds ok first things first. I tried a sleep aid and all it did was make the withdrawal worse. I get over the withdrawal fast like 4 days however I had friends tell me that tramadol will knock out the withdrawal in its tracks and I found it to b true. It's a narcotic like pain med meaning it works on the brain in some of the same ways the opioid pain meds do but it is not an opioid any way sure enough I took them and just like that no more withdrawal. They did not help me with my every day pain but they took away the withdrawal and when I stopped taking the tramadol there was no more withdrawal. I hope this helps you
  • EnglishGirlEEnglishGirl Posts: 1,825
    edited 04/06/2015 - 5:50 AM
    I've been off of all my meds a couple of times. I used slow titration, just a little less each day & never had withdrawal problems. Best of luck.
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • edited 04/06/2015 - 7:09 AM
    Can I ask, why you have been on pain killers for so many years? And I'm not a dr but I am not a firm believer in cold turkey and if you are going through this alone and have issues with oxygen that frightens me. I don't know what meds your on but my sister went into treatment and I have a family member who did this on there own. The person who did it with tramadol is very lucky because that is now a class 2 medication and sometimes its withdrawls are more severe then a oxycotin, hydrocodone ect. Ive only been on pain killers for about 11 months am fearful, because my remaining pain was lets just say, a result of surgery. And now I'm left with no diagnosis (or several depends on how you look at it lol) and a possible surgery with a 50/50 chance this will correct it and give me my life back. I'm terrified. Anyway, thats what leads me or draws me into your post. Why so long, and with all the new regulations why are they not trying to take you down? DO you have a long list of back issues, neck issues,arthritic, ect, what is your diagnosis for so much meds?
    I fear being alone in a cabin, would freak me out more. I know that I try to stretch the medication to see if I can "get by" without it however I'm at a beginning stage, with no real diagnosis but pain meds scare m, but I'm in terrible pain, but I don't want 16 years of medication either. I know valium is given when people are through their injury or recovery or what have you, help come off pain meds, Some do have to maintain because of issues like RA ect. I would need to be somewhere to keep myself distracted. I'm going crazy with a pain level of 8+ on every given day, trying to get through life I've lost my job of 10 years not because of meds but because of whats happened, but I find myself trying to do little things to not let me get past this point of needing more meds which I truly due i'm suffering right now...my drs can't seem to figure out "whats wrong"...I get an average of 2 hours of "sleep" the rest is just that "rest" painful rest..but im feared with what your going thru that I too will be faced with that...sorry ranting...YOU only my opinion not a dr I would go to a rehab if that serious...or find a better PM dr. BUT that being said
    1. the oxygen thing makes me nervous, and cold turkey...for you I would suggest organic teas that are calming, ginger tea, chamomile only if cold turkey because some of these can not be mixed with narcotics...
    Have you tried reducing meds, like Ron said LOTS of water to flush the system, also coconut water, and tumeric is great for arthritic pain. I'm a chef by trade but I was a personal chef and worked with patients that had dietary restrictions, ie a renal diabetic was one many years ago...anyway...are you taking valium? or some type of anxiety med. xanax...don't cut back on these right away use these as you "rock" I don't know your activity restrictions, now that spring is here...sit in the sun for a bit just have meditation, maybe even some ocean sounds, bird sounds, whatever seems calming to you ...have a friend whos on your call list day or night...and ask the pharmacist what can you take that wont interact with your medications coming off...the mind is your most powerful asset...take motrin, and tylenol, set up a schedule to slowly wean off. Smoothies packed with vitamins and minerals and protein..like kiwi, strawberries , blueberries, ..could use the coconut water in there to keep you hydrated make ice cubes with them to add in smoothies...beets are very good for the liver , horseradish as well 1/4 tsp gives you so many health benefits the idea is to keep you healthy and distracted and the tumeric read up on it ...as you go thru this...don't do caffiene, small amounts if you even drink it that will just keep you wired, you will go thru flu like symptoms cold turkey, you'll feel so ill, you'll be lethargic, you will hate everything and everyone...so I don't know if this helps or hinders your decision, again not a health professional just my approach to coming off slowly, you can PM if you'd like or respond on the thread here. Keep me posted on your decision But remember 16 years as YOU know is a long time and cold turkey, the risks are there of something bad going wrong because your body is reliant on these drugs it looks for them it will be a HUGE shock to just take them away....Good luck I don't know wher you live but I'm going to PM you a name of someone check his website...
    This can't be happening
  • Thanks for your advice I appreciate your in-put.
    So sorry you are going through what you are, it is so difficult that
    is for sure.
    Yes I do have health issues that I have spent a ton of money and
    all the other tools to lessen it.. This past 18 months things have taken
    a turn for the worst and I want to be able to be on as little pain medication
    as possible. You said that is a lot of pain medication. I don't think I
    mentioned how much I am currently taking but that is exactly my point
    if you take 3 (30mg) Oxycotine and 3 (10/325mg) Endocet you should be getting
    pretty good relief.
    I have asked to take several other medications (not narcotic) that I have had bad
    side effects too, hopeful that this time they would work. But they did not and in fact
    I was surprised that the Doctor's let me take them again. The Doctor's just keep
    wanting to do injections etc. with no relief. So in order to do all the therapy and
    swimming I want to do, I need to get this pain down.
    You sound like you are going through what I am trying to get answers and no sleep on
    and on. I pray you will get answers and things will turn around for you.
    Wow I am ranting but pain makes me that way plus the frustration of it all.
    I don't need re-hab this is not about addiction, this is about my decision to take
    a for sure hard step to improve my tolerance level. Yes I have cut back in the past but not
    now there is no way the pain is to the point if I have my pain pill I will take it to help.
    Yes the oxygen is a concern but with my C-pap machine my test have came back
    in the 90's.
    I am going to the cabin because I do not want my family around me. I am sure I
    will do a ton of crying and being a bit----! It is so peaceful out there and I will need
    that. It is a risk but taking this stuff is a huge risk too and living in this pain is sucking
    the life out of me.
    I so appreciate your support, help, and concern.
    Not sure when I am going to do this, I hope in the near future. Family things take
    priority once I get some things under control, I am gone.
    Hopefully I made some sense here.
    How can I thank you for all the great ideas.
  • kathyykkathyy Posts: 580
    edited 04/10/2015 - 12:01 PM
    I took the first weekend to just crash. I was in misery but as I think back, I kept telling myself it was no worse than the Hong Kong flu, lol. And it really wasn't. But then the Hong Kong flu.....I have been very tired for the past few weeks. That is what my prevailing symptom has been. My poor husband took over all the duties. I treated it as if it WAS the flu. I have had no psychological "crave" for drugs. I am using ice packs and lidoderm patches judiciously. Hang in there and PM me anytime. I will be looking for it. k
  • Hope3 said:
    I need any of your ideas which I am sure there are plenty
    of posts on this subject but right now I just need some help please
    on getting off Oxycotine and Endocet which I have taken in different
    dozes and with other medications for 6 years.
    Due to the fact that my pain level has got to the point that the current
    medications I have taken for along time are not helping and I have
    built up a Tolerance my pain is not being controlled.
    I am fed up with Doctor's who want to try other types of medications
    that I have suggested and have had reactions to like my Oxygen level
    dropping to 70's and won't work with me to find a combination of others,
    I have made a decision to be dropped off at our son's cabin where
    there no phones and stay there until I am clean of it all.
    Please if you have ever done this how long does it take and what ideas
    would you give me please.
    Thanks Sherrri
    First off, let me tell you there is no easy way. I took Percocet for years which led to abuse. At the same time I was abusing Xanax. Now let me be clear. I wasn't taking them for pleasure. I abused them due to high tolerance levels that had built up. I also got significantly depressed when my son was diagnosed with Cancer and I turned to the meds for relief. What I know now is that I was going into withdrawal in between doses.

    I made the stupid decision to stop everything cold turkey....big mistake. By week 3 I had a psychotic break requiring hospitalization. I became delusional. I had lost my business during my son's illness and my life spiraled out of control. Instead of recognizing I was having a nervous breakdown, I thought it was the drugs so I ditched them.

    Please find a drug clinic or an addiction Centre that will help you detox. A gradual taper supervised by a doctor is best. After my breakdown I started addiction counseling 3x a week. I was a zombie and the withdrawal was hell. (Benzo wd is the WORST).

    I am now just over 3 months clean and have never felt better. I still have some residual benzo symptoms but they are managed. My Seroquel taper (prescribed during my hospitalization) is going fine...will be done in a week. My only med is Lyrica for chronic pain. I don't crave narcotics or opiates at all.

    I was told a detox will take about 10-14 days before you are withdrawal symptoms free. BUT those first 7-8 days are HELL (no sugar coating).... so I suggest you do a medically supervised taper. I'm happy to hear you recognize the meds aren't helping you and want to come off. Too many go the other way and pop more.

    Good luck.
  • Fever
    First it is so wonderful that you made it through all of that and feel
    good about it plus are able to deal with your pain with Lyrica.
    The thing is I am not doing this in a few weeks due to any addiction issues.
    This is due to the fact that I have taken meds for years narcotic and others
    and want to not go up in them plus lower my tolerance now not later.
    So when I do go back to them I can use way less and hopefully not so strong.
    I after so many years using them at way higher levels hate the side effects
    plus now little relief. They are a great tool and my Doctor says they will be
    a life time tool for me, but that only means if I don't cut back now I will
    just go up and up.
    In the last several months a new kind of pain has developed leaving me
    at a 7/8 and sometimes 9 level.
    I decided to run it by my GP who is the one that set my pain level of 7 and he is upset that
    I am even considering doing this right now with my symptoms/issues and wants
    me to try to do some more injections, therapy and finally has ideas on some nerve
    meds to try. I have not made my decision to try his way yet, I am fed up with trying
    anything at this point. The reason it has taken too long for the Doctor's to listen to
    what I was telling them and the stuff they want me to do which includes other meds.
    is not the answer. My system is sick of all of them and I want to start over.
    I checked around and thought maybe a place where they deal with tolerance issues
    might be good but my Doctor says that labels you with addiction of which I have never
    shown a sign of, he would rather help me out. There is another person on here also
    who brought up that very thing why don't they have those kind of clinics.
    So again thanks for your in-put and also it is great for you that you got through all
    My biggest concern is not the withdrawals I expect that to be hell, it is dealing with the pain
    that is my biggest concern right now.
    Take care of yourself and you have helped me out with your post. For whatever reason
    people decide to lower or stop meds it is so wonderful to have the support and help of others.
    Thanks Sherri
  • Hi... Well, for one thing you need to wean. You must do this gradually, to avoid the physical withdrawal symptoms. I recommend 2.5 mg reduction after each week. Oxycontin is not available in these doses, but your doctor can change to IR form of oxycodone. This will work the same as the long acting is the same drug. Hope that helps
    Left foramina stenosis of L3/L4 (retrolisthesis)
    L2-ilaic revision fusion ( loose screws) with a laminectomy at L3 (cage at L3-L4)
    (PLIF) -@ L4/ L/5 - S1 (cage at L4/L5)
  • Be prepared. You may feel extremely fatigued as I do. I am still having some chills even after 4 weeks. I have good days and bad days. I stopped from 3.5 mgs hydrocodone and 2.5 mgs methadone basically. First I stopped the hydrocodone. Then the methadone. I find that methadone withdrawal is awful - I tried it once before. If at all possible, have someone with you for support. I felt dead for the first week at least. I am still far from normal, although I know my age (63) is making it harder.

    I have also realized since stopping narcotics that they were masking a cervical issue (yay!) I am having a scan next week on that. You have my prayers but please, please titrate down slowly. It took me nearly 6 months to get to the point that I could make the "jump." I know you are impatient but be kind to your body and mind. You might also want an antidepressant. I asked for Lexipro since it is ok for the heart and it has helped some. Best wishes but be safe. Take it slow and easy. Kathy
  • You are too sweet to try to help me with what you are dealing with and
    I will be forever grateful.
    You are indeed brave to go through this and I think of you often hoping
    it improves your health and adds so much to your life.
    I finally decided to run it by my GP and he was upset he was the one who
    set my pain level at a 8 now 9. But he has been slow in working with me to find
    a right combination of meds. or even with ideas of the direction to go.
    I have had to pursue two other doctors who too just avoided the SI area until
    I insisted on the tests I found here. That and of course my family mostly my grandson
    is part of my reason for wanting to quit. I just got a prescription for Nortriplylin ad Fluoxetine
    he thinks that will help what is Nerve pain I guess. I don't do well with tons of
    meds. but boy at this point I am willing to try. But after taking the one last night
    I just read a lot of the group they fall in and those are the ones I have had black outs
    etc. with. But I will do whatever I can at this point,, waiting for another injection next
    week the insurance would not pay for it any sooner. It did help until I decided to plant
    flowers with my grandson and go shopping then all hell broke loose again. But those
    and band aids I need to do something like therapy plus the quit meds to get anywhere.
    If these two meds don't help I am on my way. I wish I was strong enough to do what you
    are taper like that but the pain is just to much at this point, so that is the reason for
    thinking cool turkey or nothing. To tell you the truth I am scared and sick of the medical
    community for good reasons enough is enough.
    I am 67 and know what you mean but sure want some years to do so many things.
    Do you have grandkids and are you able to enjoy things with them that is so important.
    I don't have a supportive husband in fact this weekend he is leaving for the weekend when
    my PT had said do zero. But that is my choice I don't want pity from anyone. Those who
    have support are so fortunate and should be thankful everyday.
    So we fight on right and I will pray your next test comes out with positive ideas to help you.
    Sorry for ranting I get lonely and with not being able to do anything this is a big help.
    Take care Sherri
  • Well guess what I cannot do it go cold turkey, I tried it for 3 days and wanted to die from the level of pain and feeling worse than I thought possible. I am weak I guess, no I don't feel that way but wow for all of you that can do that I at least have a small picture of what it would take.
    There were many of you that encouraged me to not do it cold turkey and why, I thank you for that so much and you were right I should of listened.
    Also thanks for all the wonderful ideas and somewhere down the road I will think of it again but taper off slowly.
    So just a up-date of a person who in the world of pain and the tool of pain medications right now I will and need to take and be grateful for the pain meds.
    My GP is trying to work up a mix of medications, TP and injections to try to get my SI joint plus the inflammation calmed down.
    Thanks again for all your encouragement and help you are all a wonderful source of kind, caring, helpful and informative
  • and we have to be KIND to our body. We don't recover as quickly as a 40 year old. Sorry but that is the truth. Yep, I love my garden and planting flowers took me out, too! You need to get down to small doses before stopping. Nortriptylin is a very good anti-depressant known to help with pain management. You probably need a muscle relaxer. Can you take drugs like Neurontin? Good for nerve pain. Have you tried lidocaine patches? Can be very helpful. Ice can also be your best friend. Your doc can come up with a much easier titration plan for reducing pain meds. Getting off pain meds isn't a badge of honor and I did it for selfish reasons. I thought I had a bad heart (was misinterpreting pain signals from my neck) and my cardiologist wanted me off methadone.

    Yep, have 6 grandchildren but haven't been very mobile for the past 2 months while my body tries to relearn how to fight pain without narcotics. We'll see where I end up but you can really mess yourself up if you jump off drugs cold turkey and I really, really advise NOT trying that again. You can pm me anytime. Hang in there. Kathy
  • I am on my 7th day of going cold turkey from taking oxycodone and Lyrica. I moved from one state where every one of my doctors were beyond compassionate to my home state where every doctor has been cruel and unwilling to help me. I practically begged them to at least wean me off my pain meds, but no..they said it isn't there problem. It was the same with the Lyrica, I went through horrific withdrawal from that last year. I have over 5 chronic pain medical conditions along with heart conditions, lung disease, disintegrative nerve disease, etc. I pray you don't have to go through withdrawal again, but if you do there is something called the Thomas Recipe that helps with the symptoms. Ideally, you shouldn't do it cold turkey but I had no choice in the matter. I feel like I am dying, but I know I won't and praying always helps, too! I am so glad I found this site so I can talk to people who know how I feel! Take care and God Bless you. Sandy
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